Words and visuals by LeBron Pryce
Toronto Metropolitan University (TMU) student artists are looking for opportunities across the city to further their careers, including singer-songwriter Christina Kennedy. eye opener Got a chance to attend his Toronto-debut show at Drake’s Underground on October 27.
One can say that the true energy and skill of a musician is revealed during their live performances. During Breaking Sound Canada’s show at Drake Underground last month, Kennedy and his bandmates did just that, showcasing their musical talents in fine style.
18-year-old Kennedy is a rising star in the music industry. Born in China, then adopted and raised in Vancouver, the artist now attends TMU as a first-year creative industries student. Now, he aims to take the music industry by storm in Toronto – starting with Halloweekend at Drake Underground late last month.
The Vancouver artist took to the stage with a bright smile and enthusiasm that enthralled the entire venue. Audiences and performers alike were mesmerized by their cover, sung to get the crowd excited to start the show. He started by saying “Mr. Brightside” by The Killers, then quickly transitioned into “Love Story” and “You Belong with Me” by Taylor Swift. Kennedy’s covers of these songs not only showcased the range of her vocal abilities, but Sent out an infectious wave of energy.
“I always start my set with ‘Mr. Bright Side.’ It’s almost like my warmup. “It excites me, it excites my audience and (it sets the tone for the rest of the show),” Kennedy explained during a previous interview. Eye,
Riding on the crowd’s growing energy, Kennedy then began performing his own original songs, notably “All Night” and “We Can Have It All.”
Although Kennedy is best known as a solo artist, his chemistry with his band was eminent. With drummer Ramon Trahan laying the foundation and bassist Mar Rojas Velasquez supporting the group, the rhythms flowed seamlessly. Then, with Kennedy’s angelic vocals accompanied by his skilled guitarist Trevor LaRose, the stage was filled with talent. The group seamlessly worked together like a well-oiled machine.
Kennedy’s charisma and personality serve as the foundation of his performances, connecting with the crowd at every opportunity and breaking down the wall between performer and audience in the process. This character trait – along with singing and lyrical talent – is a big factor in the atmosphere she creates when she performs. From an audience member’s perspective, the interaction he created with his crowd was refreshing and real.
“Being on stage is very rewarding, I really love it. It feels very homely…I don’t know if it’s a good thing or a bad thing, but the energy of the crowd feeds off of me,” Kennedy said in the interview. Eye In October.
Kennedy looked comfortable on stage. Her lightness in those moments in front of the crowd made the mood more comfortable and natural. It’s clear that she provides more than entertainment when she performs. It’s a collective experience that she tries to create for everyone.
With only a few songs left to perform, Kennedy closed the show by making a request to the audience: he was requested to take a selfie with his mother in Vancouver. After some banter and jostling, the crowd gathered together in the frame, smiling for a picture.
Kennedy has been making her way through the industry, performing at other local venues and gaining more and more attention after each one. Their most recent performance was at the Big Fam Jam November half-time show at the Supermarket in Kensington Market on 14 November. She’s coming to it all and as her song says, it’s just “A Dream Away.”
With files from Danielle Reed